Tuesday, June 30, 2009


This place is so cool. They serve southern Italian fare, with an exotic, all-Italian wine list, and many so pizzas and pastas it took me forever to decide. Uber-cool decor, including an exaggerated giant chandelier hanging ominously above the bar, and an old Sophia Loren film projected on the wall. We shared fried zucchini blossoms, and I had a pizza with speck, pear, gorgonzola and walnuts ($15.95). Not too expensive, a ton of intersting wine and dishes to choose from, and a cool vibe (and way easy to get a last minute table then Mozza). Now I have more pizza ideas to try at home!

7605 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA

Monday, June 29, 2009

La Cuchara de San Telmo - San Sebastian

This tapas bar/restaurant was by far our favorite in San Sebastian. They offer several contempory style tapas, a great reprive when you think you may have overdosed on traditional pixtos bars. We had Foie gras, duck breast, scallops, sweetbreads, blood sausage...all my faves! And so cheap! Each dish was only a couple of Euros, a steal. Look how big that foie gras is! Every dish was very good, very rich, and beautiful. The only shame is you eat standing up at the bar, and I kept thinking that it would be so nice to sit down, relax and savor every bite. We went there twice on this trip, and if I return to San Sebastian I will go there first.

On egin!

Calle de 31 de Agosto
San Sebastian Spain

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sazon - Mar Vista

After driving past this restaurant a million times, I finally checked it out last night with a friend who has eaten there a couple of times and enjoyed it very much. This is why: inexpensive, creative food, intimate neighborhood cafe vibe, and BYOB.

The owner/chef Claudia, calls her food Latin fusion. You will recognize flavors and dishes from various Hispanic countries, all with her twist on them. We started off with a variety of empanadas like spinach, potato and chicken. They were great and prepared the way I like them: fried. We also shared some tostones, fried plantain chips.

Mi Gaditano had coconut crusted fish with spinach mashed potatoes and ate it so fast I didn't have an opportunity to try a bite!

I had the spinach stuffed chicken breast with vegetables, rice and black beans. The chicken was very moist, especially for white meat. I enjoyed everything here, but I found myself sprinkling salt on everything, which I rarely do in a restaurant. The menu boasts their use of little or no salt, but the food needs it to really come alive. The entrees are very reasonably priced under $10, and the portions are good. Bring in your own wine, and it is even a better deal. To finish, we enjoyed her version of natillas, which was altered a bit to resemble a cake than pudding. I was too stuffed to eat much, but the sweet corn and chocolate combo was nice.

I am so excited I finally tried this place, it is so nice having a terrific neighborhood joint to walk to, linger over a good meal, feel welcomed by the staff, and not break the bank.

12406 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90066

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Wurstkuche - Downtown Los Angeles

I ventured downtown the other night to check out Wurstkuche, a Father's Office-esque grilled sausage bar. It is in the Arts District of downtown, with a nice view of what I like to call "the backside of downtown." You place your order at the counter, grab your drinks and your number, head down the hall and try to find a seat in the main dining room. Dark, with communal tables, bar and DJ station. They bring out your food pretty quickly, but if you decide to get more food, it is back to the first room and wait in line. The menu is just suasages, choice of a toppings, fries with many dipping sauces, and pleanty of exotic beer on tap. We both opted for the Bockwurst with grilled onlins and sweet peppers, large fries with pesto mayo and blue cheese walnut and bacon dip. We should have just gotten two of the blue cheese, it was so good. Two pints of Pabst Blue Ribbon (I know, not very exotic, but cheap) brought the tab to $22.78. A bargin. I was full but not stuffed. If you are hungry, go ahead and order two sausages. This place is pretty cool, with good food and comfortable atmoshere for lingering and enjoying the night.

800 E 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013